[sixties-l] Panther 35th Anniversary - It's About Time

From: radtimes (resist@best.com)
Date: Sat Sep 01 2001 - 16:19:47 EDT

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    Panther 35th Anniversary-It's About Time

    source - itsabouttime3@juno.com

                    Reunion and Conference - Oct. 11-14, 2001

                     University of the District of Columbia
                                Washington, DC

    The Black Panther Party for Self-Defense was founded in October 1966 and was
    a vital and influential organization in the Black Liberation Struggle. The
    Party's Survival Programs were models for work that is still needed in poor
    and oppressed communities today and included Breakfast for Schoolchildren,
    Busing to Prisons, Free Medical Clinics, Food Giveaways and Sickle Cell
    Anemia Screening.

    Unlike other Civil Rights organizations, the Black Panther Party (BPP)
    additionally insisted upon the right of all people to defend themselves from
    racist attack. Police violence in the community spurred the Panthers' police
    patrols as well as efforts to gain political control of police activities
    through community control initiatives.

    J. Edgar Hoover's FBI and other police agencies set out to destroy the BPP
    which was deemed to be the "number one security threat to the United
    States." Over a period of five years, there were over 1800 arrests of BPP
    members, many on trumped up charges. There were 30 murders of BPP members by
    police and their agents. Many people were exiled, destroying their families.
    The FBI program used to "neutralize" party members - COINTELPRO - authorized
    illegal acts and false charges, including direct armed assaults on BPP
    offices and homes. Although portrayed as violent and dangerous, the real
    threat was the Party's dedication to political education and study. Panthers
    not only carried guns, they also carried books and studied ideology as well
    as health, nutrition and law as part of "serving the people."

    The demise of the BPP left many casualties in its wake; most notably the
    many political prisoners who have yet to find justice. The continuing
    incarceration of Herman Bell, Jalil Bottom, Eddie Conway, Romaine Chip
    Fitzgerald and many others is one reason why it is important that we come
    together on this anniversary for a working conference to plan strategies and
    consolidate forces to win their release. Many former Black Panther Party
    members and supporters continue to work for social justice in their
    respective communities. It is our responsibility to define and transmit our
    legacy to the comrades of the future.

    The It's About Time Committee, based in Sacramento,CA, is comprised of
    former members of the Black Panther Party and its supporters. The committee
    publishes a quarterly newsletter that is available on line at

    It's About Time is sponsoring the upcoming Black Panther Party 35th Year
    Anniversary and Conference to be held Oct. 11-14, 2001 at the University of
    the District of Columbia in Washington DC. The conference will feature
    workshops on BPP history, organizing techniques - especially for youth,
    police brutality, the death penalty, reparations, women in the struggle,
    revolutionary art, the need for solidarity in the struggle and others.

    There will be a panel discussions on reparations and political prisoners.
    There will be hearings on COINTELPRO with testimony from victims which will
    focus on strategies to win freedom for those political prisoners and exiles
    whose cases were tainted by illegal COINTELPRO activities. Several members
    of the Congressional Black Caucus have been invited to hear this testimony
    as part of ongoing investigations. There will also be ongoing film showings,
    photo, art and historical memorabilia displays.

    It's About Time calls on all former BPP members, community workers and all
    progressive people to come together for this historic event. We especially
    encourage young people and students to attend the conference to learn
    organizing techniques and to network with each other to organize around
    issues that impact them directly.

    Anyone interested in participating in the youth program can contact Ameejill
    Whitlock at ameejill@hotmail.com or phone 410-815-2298. For regular updates
    on the conference program and to access a registration form, please visit our
    website: itsabouttimebpp.com or write to It's About Time, PO Box 221100,
    Sacramento, CA 95822. Phone 916-455-0908, e-mail: itsabouttime3@juno.com

    Dare to Struggle, Dare to Win!



    The program for the 35th Year BPP Reunion and Conference is continuing to

      - David Dubois, professor at U. Mass at Amherst and former editor of the
    Black Panther Party newspaper, has agreed to participate in the panel on

      - Bobby Seale, co-founder and former Chairman of the BPP, will be
    conducting a workshop on grassroots organizing in the high-tech era.

      - Several Congresspeople, including Bob Rush, Cynthia McKinney, Barbara
    Lee, Maxine Waters and Jesse Jackson Jr., have been personally invited to
    sit on the panel for the Tribunal on Cointelpro. A major feature of the
    conference, there will be hearings with testimony from Cointelpro victims
    which hopefully will be used in the ongoing Congressional investigation.

    We encourage everyone to send in your registrations as soon as possible as
    funds are needed to continue the organizing process for a conference this
    size. Any former Black Panther Party members, NCCF members or community
    workers who are not on our mailing list, please send us your address and
    other contact information so we can keep you informed.

    Anyone who would like more info or registration materials can
    write or call, or visit our website at:


    Ads for the program are being sold to offset printing costs. The fees are:
    $200 for a full 8-1/2 X 11 page, $100 for A half page, $50 for a quarter page
    and $25 for a business card size ad. Individuals will be listed as donors
    for $15 and families for $25.

    Make checks payable to: It's About Time
    Mail to: It's About Time
    PO Box 221100
    Sacramento, CA 95822.

    Ads should be camera-ready; they will appear as they are presented,
    and materials submitted will not be returned.
    The deadline is Sept. 15, 2001.

    Get Involved - take out ad for your Union or organization!


    It's About Time is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. Tax-deductible donations
    to support the conference, the newsletter or Books Behind Bars, a program
    that sends books and other reading materials to prisoners around the
    country, can be sent to the above address.

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